On the job growing local businesses
In the past year WREDA helped 451 businesses with hands on active support. Across sectors such as high-value manufacturing, science, food and beverage, ICT, screen and other creative industries, the success of Wellington’s wildly innovative people and companies is one of our main objectives.
Intex Group - WREDA worked to connect Wairarapa construction supply company Intex Group to the expertise needed to expand its product range, which is expected to result in a new product that will be in line for further R&D funding support.
Times-7 – The Hutt Valley antenna company was looking for assistance with its sales efforts and WREDA was able to help with a sales coach. The result? A dramatic increase in sales leads and engagement at the company’s next overseas trade show.
2shakes – A Govtech start-up out of the 2016 R9 accelerator, 2Shakes was looking for R&D funding. WREDA helped the company access $140,000, which allowed it to offer its product to smaller New Zealand businesses through a freemium model.
Helping businesses far and wide
From pop-up business schools in Porirua to clinics in Kapiti, WREDA has been working hard to help small businesses outside of the Wellington CBD.
Co-working spaces have also been a focus, such as 3Mile in the Wairarapa. The brainchild of tech sector veteran Marie-Claire Andrews, 3Mile provides a physical base for entrepreneurs and remote workers.
The team helped facilitate access to $5.3m in R&D funding and capability vouchers, with 89 per cent of the businesses our Business Growth team worked closely with likely to recommend WREDA’s services.
“I honestly love the work WREDA does and have found the support and insight over the years invaluable to my business. The key piece of value WREDA offers is the business growth managers; your advice, connections, and the events you jointly run… So, I will take a moment to personally thank you.”
- Angus Allan, Hello Digital
At this year’s Wellington Gold Awards, the team was thrilled to see more than half of all finalists, and nearly all category winners, were businesses, organisations or events supported by either WREDA or Creative HQ.
Students making the smart choice in Wellington
International students are a valuable part of Wellington, contributing to the economy and creating value into the future as they become the leaders of tomorrow.
Over the past year we’ve helped promote the region via marketing activity, events, our Wellington Student Excellence Awards and agent training as a great place to study everything from nanotechnology, creative arts to accounting.
4 per cent rise in international student numbers bringing $10.7m of additional value to the region
1 million online engagements from Study Wellington marketing campaigns
8,504 international students chose Wellington
Behind the scenes of Screen
Wellington’s screen industry is already wildly famous, both within New Zealand and across the globe. It helps flood the region with talent, innovative thinking and creates a pipeline of work for a sprawling network of supporting businesses. Some of last year’s highlights included upcoming blockbuster Mortal Engines, a big budget Sony PlayStation commercial and homegrown comedy Wellington Paranormal.
515 film permits issued, a record number
$93.2m in production value to the region
The business of tourism
We launched a new partnership dubbed Team Wellington between Wellington’s largest tourism organisations. This will see a $2.5million funding boost to grow tourism to the region over the next five years.
Funds from the partnership between WREDA, Te Papa, Kiwirail, Weta Studio Tours and Wellington International Airport will be used to grow the number of visitors from China and South-East Asia along with Wellington’s traditional markets of Australia, USA, and the United Kingdom.
Our work with regional partners to grow tourism in their areas continued, overseeing the Regional Trails Project – which will promote the region’s network of trails promoted under one banner - and KapitiCoastNZ.com. And there are other exciting new initiatives on the horizon such as the Porirua Adventure Park and Wairarapa Dark Sky initiatives.
2744 travel agents trained
439 agent famils
Do Wellington Your Way
Wellington’s not your normal place to visit, so our tourism marketing shouldn’t follow the standard destination marketing formula. For our winter campaign, ‘Do Wellington Your Way’, we wanted to make a statement on what Wellington’s really about. Something that gets into the heart of what makes Wellington distinct and a welcoming place to visit… for everyone.
The most liveable city… again!
For the second year running, Wellington was named the most liveable city in the world by Deutsche Bank. We put together a campaign to promote all that Wellington has to offer as a place to live and visit.
Supercharging Wellington’s events
Wellington is known for its vibrant events calendar and this year didn’t disappoint, from the NZ Festival, the delightful Jim Henson Restrospectable, the sold-out All Whites World Cup qualifier to the annual spectacular that is the World of WearableArt show.
“It takes a great city to make an outstanding WOW. Our year on year partnership with WREDA is central to helping Wellington shine for our delighted WOW fans. The excitement starts on the stage and spreads across the city for a joyous three weeks.”- Gisella Carr, Chief Executive WOW
Our Business Events Wellington team also had a stellar year, luring more large conferences to Wellington than ever before. Wellington now plays a significant role in the business events market, second only to Auckland in market share at 20 per cent, resulting in excess of 700,000 business delegate days per year.
Where it all connects
It was a stellar year for the city’s civic venues, with sold-out shows and a multitude of conference events. The St James Theatre closed in May for scheduled strengthening work and we look forward to its reopening.
Whilst we’re doing well, we continue to miss out on events by not having appropriately sized venues for large concerts, sporting events and conferences. A WREDA-commissioned report by sport and entertainment company Gemba revealed the amount of events and live shows in the capital could double with the construction of a new 12,000-seat arena and a new conference centre will allow us to remain competitive with other Australasian cities in the lucrative business events market.
334 performance events in our venues
260 business events in our venues
423,369 audience numbers
$68m in out-of-region visitor spend
26,700 out-of-region conference visitors
Sold out performances: Lorde, Jimmy Carr, Macklemore, Imagine Dragons, The Killers, The Jim Henson Retrospectacle
Imagine Dragons - In May 2018, Las Vegas rockers Imagine Dragons brought their Evolve World Tour to Australasia, and with it, the third largest music event hosted at TSB Arena - second only to Ed Sheeran and Katy Perry. What’s more, an impressive 45 per cent of attendees who flocked to the arena were from out of Wellington.
Celebrate Wellington - It’s a big year in Wellington - 2018 marks 20 years since Te Papa opened, the 30th year of the World of WearableArt, Visa Wellington On a Plate’s 10th anniversary, 65 years since the Royal NZ Ballet was formed and 125 years since legislation was passed in Wellington giving women the vote. With this in mind, WREDA and Wellington City Council are helping thousands of locals enjoy the many cultural events the capital has on offer through ‘Celebrate Wellington’ grants. Targeted at Wellingtonians who struggle to connect with arts and culture, due to cost or access challenges, Celebrate Wellington has already helped more than 1,500 people across the region via small grants, as well as indirect support through special equipment and resources to further increase accessibility.